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Measurement and Assessment of Accounting Research, Education, Reputation Impact and Engagement

Special issue call for papers from Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal

Guest Editors

Professor Brendan O’Connell, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia
Professor Gloria Agyemang, Royal Holloway University of London, UK
Professor Paul Delange, Curtin University, Perth, Australia
Dr  Ann Sardesai, CQ University, Sydney, Australia

Why publish a special issue on this topic?

The rise of research measurement and assessment exercises along with journal and university ranking systems has become a global phenomenon in recent times. Paralleling this rise has been a greater push to demonstrate research impact and for academics to forge closer ties with industry and commerce to demonstrate better service to industry and the professions. Prior related research has explored a number of topics including:

  • How to best measure research performance (Hasselback, Reinstein & Schwan, 2003; Chan, Chen & Cheng, 2006);
  • Research productivity of accounting academics relative to other disciplines (Swanson, 2004; Swanson, Wolfe and Zardkoohi, 2007);
  • Limitations of journal and university rankings (Willmott, 2011; Agyemang & Broadbent, 2015);
  • Impacts of elitism and entrenchment on journal publication success ( Lee, 1995; 1997);
  • Threats to the academic accounting profession (Williams & Rodgers, 1995; Fogarty & Markarian, 2007);
  • Rise of the corporate university and commodification of research (Parker, 2010; Parker, 2012);
  • Impact of research assessment exercises on university management control systems (Parker & Guthrie, 2009; Agyemang and Broadbent, 2015);
  • Long-term usefulness of research assessment exercises (Otley, 2002; Pidd & Broadbent, 2015); and,
  • Lack of relevance of accounting research to practice (Parker & Guthrie, 2010; Tilt, 2010).

Yet much more research is needed to better understand the impact of this evolution on academic institutions including their control systems and the effectiveness of academics in contributing to society. As highlighted by Agyemang and Broadbent (2015) “we need to understand more about the complexity of the reactions of academics … to the management control systems that include [research assessment exercises] systems and the use of journal quality guides more generally. It may provide us … with a basis for developing more relational forms of management control that will enhance the complex values of academic research rather than simplify them in processes of commensuration and in transactional approaches to control” (1040).

This call is for studies utilising a wide variety of methodologies and theoretical perspectives that may assist in answering the following questions or similar:

  • What are the most appropriate ways to measure and assess research performance, impact and engagement?
  • How does research performance, impact and engagement in accounting compare to other disciplines?
  • How are the evolving research performance, impact and engagement agendas impacting on academics’ effectiveness in contributing to society?
  • How do measures and assessments of research performance, impact and engagement impact on universities’, students and other stakeholders’ perceptions?
  • How is the nature of accounting research being influenced by trends in measurement and assessment of research performance, impact and engagement?
  • How are universities evolving to reflect these measurement and assessment systems?
  • Are these measurement and assessment systems resulting in outcomes consistent with the advancement of the public interest?
  • How are these measurement and assessment systems impacting on academics as individuals including on their focus, motivation and professional identity?
  • What will the accounting schools, if any, of the future look like in the wake of these developments?
  • What is the evidence of, and strategies toward, addressing the divide between academic research and practice?


  • The closing date for submissions for this special issue is 31 January 2019.
  • Manuscripts should be submitted via Scholar One Manuscripts (please choose the special issue from the list when submitting).
  • All papers will be reviewed in accordance with AAAJ’s normal procedures. Please use the Author guidelines here.  Any queries in advance of submission can be sent for the attention of the Guest Editors to: Brendan.oconnell@rmit.edu.au

Key Dates

  • 31 January 2019: Closing date for submissions
  • 30 May 2019: Date by which first reviews will be completed
  • June 2019December 2019: Revisions and further review rounds
  • 31 December 2019: Final revisions due
  • 28 February 2020: Submit final copy to Emerald
  • 15 June 2020: Publication of Special Issue


Agyemang, G. and Broadbent, J. (2015), "Management control systems and research management in universities", Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Vol. 28 No 7, pp. 1018 – 1046.
Chan, K. C., Chen, C. R. and Cheng, L. T. W. (2006), “A ranking of accounting research output in the European region”, Accounting and Business Research, Vol. 36, pp. 3–17.
De Lange, P., O’Connell, B., Mathews, M. R. and Sangster, A. 2010. ‘The ERA: A Brave New World of Accountability for Australian University Accounting Schools’, Australian Accounting Review, No. 52, 20(1): 24-37. doi:10.1111/j.1835-2561.2010.00078.x
Fogarty, T. and Markarian, G. (2007), “An Empirical Assessment of the Rise and Fall of Accounting as an Academic Discipline”, Issues in Accounting Education; Vol. 22, No. 2, pp. 137-61.
Hasselback, J. R., A. Reinstein, and E. S. Schwan, 2003, Prolific authors of accounting literatures, Advances in Accounting, Vol, 20, pp. 95–125.
Lee, T. A., (1995), “Shaping the US academic accounting research profession: the American Accounting Association and the social construction of a professional elite”, Critical Perspectives on Accounting, Vol. 6, pp. 241–261.
Lee, T. A., (1997),” The editorial gatekeepers of the accounting academy”, Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal, Vol. 10, No. 1, pp. 11–30.
Martin-Sardesai, A., Irvine, H., Tooley, S., Guthrie, J. (2017), "Organizational change in an Australian university: responses to a research assessment exercise", The British Accounting Review, Published online. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bar.2017.05.002
Martin-Sardesai, A. and Guthrie, J.  (2017, forthcoming), “Australian Academics Perceptions on Research Evaluation Exercises”, has been accepted for publication in Volume I, Issue 2, 2016 of Amity Journal of Management Research,
Martin-Sardesai, A., Irvine, H., Tooley, S. and Guthrie, J. (2016), “Government Research Evaluations and Academic Freedom: A UK and Australian Comparison”, Higher Education Research & Development. Published online 18 July 2016. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/07294360.2016.1208156
Martin-Sardesai, A., et al., (2016), “Accounting for research: Academic responses to research performance demands in an Australian university", Australian Accounting Review. First published 11 November 2016.
Otley, D. (2002), “British Research in Accounting and Finance (1996--2000): The 2001 Research Assessment Exercise”, British Accounting Review, Vol. 34, pp. 387-417.
Parker, L. (2010), “Introducing the commercialised university environment: preliminary reflections on the trajectory of change”, Academic Leadership Series, Vol. 1, pp. 16-21.
Parker, L. (2012), “From privatised to hybrid corporatised higher education: a global financial management discourse”, Financial Accountability & Management, Vol. 28 No. 3, pp. 1-22.
Parker, L., and Guthrie, J. (2009), “Championing intellectual pluralism”, Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal, Vol. 22, No. 1, pp. 5–12.
Pidd, M. and Broadbent, J. (2015) “Business and Management Studies in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework”, British Journal of Management, Vol. 26, 569–581
Swanson, E. (2004), “Publishing in the majors: A comparison of accounting, finance, management, and marketing”, Contemporary Accounting Research, Vol. 21, No.1, pp. 223-55.
Swanson, E., Wolfe, C. and Zardkoohi, A. (2007), “Concentration in publishing at top-tier business journals: evidence and potential explanations”, Contemporary Accounting Research, Vol. 24, No. 4, pp. 1255-89.
Tilt, C.A. (2010), “The impact of academic accounting research on professional practice”, in Evans, E., Burritt, R. and Guthrie, J. (Eds), Accounting Education at the Crossroads in 2010, Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia, Sydney.
Willmott, H. (2011), “Journal list fetishism and the perversion of scholarship: reactivity and the ABS list”, Organization, Vol. 18 No. 4, pp. 429-442.
Wiliams, P.F. and Rodgers, J.C. (1995), “The Accounting Review and the Production of Accounting Knowledge”, Critical Perspectives on Accounting, Vol. 6, pp. 263-87.